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MENDOZA IN THE NEWS

Would You Stand Up to a Sexual Harasser? Think Again

by Stephanie Pappas
Publication: Live Science

November 12, 2012


When a sexual harassment case hits the news, people often "blame the victim," arguing that the harassed person didn't do enough to deflect the unwanted attention. Now, new research finds that this victim-blaming stems from the human tendency to overestimate oneself.

The more people assume they'll stand up to a harasser, the more they judge women who don't, a new study finds. The catch? Most evidence suggests people don't confront their harassers, even if they believe they would.

"They really falsely condemn them," said study researcher Ann Tenbrunsel, a professor of business ethics at the University of Notre Dame. "The basis of their condemnation is that they themselves would have done something differently, and chances are good they would not have."

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